foone Profile picture
13 Jan, 28 tweets, 7 min read
Here's a CPT Phoenix Jr Terminal on ebay.
And wow, it's... weird!
Check out that portrait CRT, and angled keyboard!
It seems they tried to make the keyboard symmetric for... reasons, but the left numpad isn't a numpad, it's just got a bunch of custom keys, like TASK and PARA and LINE/SKIP/OUT/ADJ.
I imagine that was designed for customizing for the specific terminal task in mind?
Real Monitors Have Curves
looks like the keyboard connects into the monitor.
and I'm guessing from the one adjustment on the monitor, that it's monochrome
(which makes sense. basically all terminals are monochrome: you usually don't need color for text)
It's here.
I'd love to have that keyboard but they want quite a bit for it. Heck, the shipping alone is too much.

ebay.com/itm/Vintage-CP…
Found a video of one in use on youtube:
it sounds from the description there that it's not actually a dumb terminal, just the monitor & keyboard for a business computer that primarily did word processing.
This page (with hilarious HTML errors!) says it was a Z80-based system "probably running CPM"
minotaurz.com/compmuse/museu…
ahh, binary dinosaurs has a page on it!
Apparently the Phoenix Jr is a microcomputer version of the Phoenix, which was a more minicomputer-sized version.
It was a high res B&W wordprocessing system, with graphical support
Apparently the monitor and keyboard was reused for the CPT9000 which was a DOS-based machine! Lovely display, there. It looks like it's doing some basic multi-tasking? Interesting!
the Museums Victoria Collections site has some pictures of the system Phoenix Jr on its own.
They date it to 1982.

collections.museumsvictoria.com.au/items/381353
CPT Corporation was a Minneapolis company, making wordprocessing systems from 1971 to the mid-90s.
Apparently their main draw was their "PT" wordprocessing software, originally sold with computers they designed
but they later designed a version which ran on standard IBM PCs, both to allow easy transfer of files in/out of CPT computers, and to allow basic PT-style editing on more common DOS computers
They seem to have been really proud of that monitor! They even produced a version to work on PCs, which had its own graphics card, and needed special drivers for DOS, Windows, and wordprocessors/spreadsheets.
when used on DOS it used a MDA-like font (9x15), but at 80x66 characters instead of the MDA's 80x25.
which is an equivalent of 720x990 pixels, though they're clearly not square.
Anyway, another ebay seller has the keyboard on its own, but it's not much cheaper:
ebay.com/itm/CPT-980234…
The systems are both expensive and rare, it seems.
I saw one quote for the Phoenix & 8000 systems as costing around 15,000$, and I think that was in 1980s dollars.
but having just learned of this thing, I definitely want the keyboard, monitor, and that PC graphics card.
Probably not gonna happen though.
I wonder if the graphics card was ever supported by any games?
it sounds like it wasn't just text, since the high-res graphical presentations were a selling point of the wordprocessor computer, so they'd hopefully keep that for the PC card+monitor. And it had a Windows 3 driver, so it has to have SOME graphics.
I just wanna find out there was a SimCity (classic) version or something that supported that weird orientation & resolution
the Nerdly Pleasures blog calls SimCity the "swiss army knife of video mode support", it supported EVERYTHING.

Like the Hercules 720x348 mode!
which feels like such a typo.
384 is a "rounder" number, since it's 256+128, but NOPE! Hercules used 348.
There was even an SVGA version of SimCity (on one of the CD releases) which just looks wrong. That's too many colors and pixels for SimCity, god damn it.
anyway that article is here, since I forgot to link it:
nerdlypleasures.blogspot.com/2014/01/simcit…
Also it turns out the person who made that youtube video saw this thread! They're @Cloudscout, and they shared their thread from when they picked up that machine:
and I forgot to mention the best thing about CPT Corporation:
The name originally stood for Cassette Power Typing

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More from @Foone

14 Jan
Something that I didn't realize but hurt my brain to learn:
John Norman (aka John Frederick Lange Jr.), of the Gor series of sci-fi/BDSM novels, is still alive.
He released two books (one of them a Gor book, #35), in 2019. Image
I guess with the fact that the series started in 1966 and feels like it's always a historical thing... I assumed he had to have quit writing and/or died back in like 1986.

Nope. Still alive, he's 89, and was apparently still writing as of 2 years ago.
also, my brain being what it is, I totally just googled for the book's cover image by entering "trans man of gor" which is NOT the title.
Read 14 tweets
14 Jan
gonna get in line for the vaccine because I've heard all these urban legends about tracking microchips

and I think I might be able to root it and install Doom
supposedly bill gates is involved, right?
so it's probably like a miniaturized 386 running ROM-DOS.
the doctor walks in, looks down at my charts, and sighs.
"well, the bad news is that you've got the virus. I'm sorry..."
"and the good news?"
"well..."
*at doom's gate starts faintly playing from my lungs*
Read 44 tweets
14 Jan
My favorite part of being sick with ADHD (by which I mean having ADHD and being sick for unrelated reasons, I'm not ill with ADHD, at least not any more than usual) is when you're too tired to do more than one thing at once, but this doesn't affect your need for stimulation
so you're doing one thing while trying and failing to find something you can do as the second thing. I've refreshed reddit, twitter, tumblr, and ebay about 20 times each, tried to work on about 4 hardware and 2 software projects, and it's just not working
so I'm just laying back in my chair watching some letsplayer shoot zombies on youtube and VIBRATING WITH ADHD BOREDOM
Read 22 tweets
13 Jan
fun fact: for a brief period in the early 2000s, Microsoft tried to increase the number of users who would register their software by employing hypnosis Image
This is actually the registration card that came with this odd piece of microsoft hardware. It's a set-top box from 2001 which displays JPEGs on your TV, off floppy disks. Image
I guess the idea is that it let you use a big living room TV to look at photos, instead of a small PC CRT? Image
Read 64 tweets
13 Jan
shout out to ebay who periodically decides my search on "minisport" isn't getting enough results, so it decides I must have spelled it wrong, and corrects it to "mini sport", then suggests "men sport", and I get emails like this: Image
I DO NOT WANT TINY BASKETBALLS, EBAY
I WANT ZENITH MINISPORTS Image
anyway I went in and fixed the search to have quotes in it.
ebay will fiddle with your searches unless you quote it, but sometimes it may take months before that has a noticeable effect
Read 5 tweets
13 Jan
fun fact: the 25th amendment has two sections which allow the vice president to take over from the current president: section 3 and section 4.

They've only been invoked three times, though one is debatable. In all three cases, it involved the president's butt.
Section 4 is the one everyone is talking about recently.
It's the one that lets the vice president take over because they've judged the president to be "unable to discharge the powers and duties of [their] office"
It has never been used, though there have been a couple cases where it was considered. Two with Reagan and two with Trump.
Read 27 tweets

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